It’s that time of the week again. Excited? You should be! I am. I’ve also had a lot of caffeine this week while covering the Television Critics Association press tour with my colleagues, so … this should be interesting.
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‘NCIS’ BOSS: ‘EVERYONE HAS TO WATCH THE FIRST TWO EPISODES’
I hear ya, NCIS fans. The departure of Cote de Pablo is an unfortunate turn of events, to say the least. NCIS EP Gary Glasberg was “saddened” by the situation, too, telling me earlier this week during CBS’ annual bash for television critics that “it’s the last thing we planned on.” That said, he promised, “At the end of the day, I’m really happy with what we came up with. Everyone has to watch the first two episodes.”
Why? Well, for one, he teased, the episodes were completely reworked in order to accommodate this curve ball. “I literally had to lock myself away and everything I was planning on had to be blown out and I had to start all over again,” he says of the news, which came after plans for the season had already begun. “Again, it’s not what we had hoped for. This family — this NCIS family that exists between [the characters] — is so special and so unique, and this was Cote’s decision and we have to respect that … but some really fantastic work is going to come out of what occurred. We have some really terrific stuff planned for the year.”
So what ARE those plans? For one, Ziva will be “prominent” in the second episode of the season and “it’s a really touching, emotional story and I promise the viewers will not be disappointed — especially the Tiva fans, as we say. I hope it’s everything they want it to be.”
He adds: “I want some of it to be a surprise, but I think people will be pleased at the end of the day with where it’s left both emotionally and psychologically — and not only for Tony, but Gibbs, Abby, and everybody. That’s a big part of what I was taking into consideration — really understanding how the people and the fans are so connected to our characters. You really have to honor that.”
Who’s already crying?
‘SUPERNATURAL': PICKING UP THE PIECES; PLUS, ‘DOCTOR DEAN-LITTLE’
That Men of Letters stuff is just the gift that keeps on giving. It’s no secret that I was a big fan of the introduction of this mythology last year, and EP Jeremy Carver told me this week that they intend to ride the MOL train into this season. “We’ll be delving a lot more into that,” he says, “and in fact we’ll be seeing the very first two hunters to ever be stationed at the men of letters bunker. That’s a really, really fun episode we have coming up early in the season where we will be flashing back to 1935.”
Elsewhere, it will take at least the first three episodes for the show to get back into the case-of-the-week format as before, then they’ll be dealing with the fallout of thousands of angels falling from the sky. “There are a lot of pieces to pick up. As we pick up those pieces, we’re always introducing new things, but we’re very much in the world of consequences of last season,” he shared.
But when we do get back to the week-to-week ongoings, here’s something to look forward to: an episode that will cause Dean to become what EP Robert Singer called “Doctor Dean-little.” Yes, he talks to animals. (!!) “One of the highlights being Dean getting into a brawl with a pigeon,” Carver dished. “It’s a logical progression from fairies to pigeons.”
‘NCIS: LA': FINALE TRAUMA WILL HAVE ‘UNBELIEVABLE EMOTIONAL CONSEQUENCES’ ON DEEKS
Poor Deeks. Poor Sam. Poor everyone! The gang on NCIS: LA was up a creek without a paddle and headed for a whirlpool at the end of last season, and things will probably get worse before they get better. But here’s the upside to all of this peril: It’s going to make for can’t-miss drama, according to Eric Christian Olsen.
“It’s the best premiere we’ve ever had,” he says. “We have the most honest scene we’ve ever seen between Kensi and Deeks … we have a two-hour James Bond movie for our finale and our premiere that has consequences.”
As you’ll recall, Deeks and Sam were being tortured for information in the finale, and Olsen, who says the cast and crew are just finishing up work on episode 1, says we will see consequences to the traumatic events. “I think we’re going to see the most human reaction we’ve ever seen on this show to something like this,” he says. “I think a lot of times these things happen and there aren’t any emotional consequences and there are unbelievable emotional consequences. I don’t think he’s prepared to compartmentalize it. I don’t know if he knows how to get through it. … This is going to have a very real, long-lasting effect on him.”
Overall, he says, “It’s never been better. It’s so exciting to start off the season with this premiere.”
So are we!